Water damage and mold can go hand in hand. Where there is water and heat, there is a combination for a disaster. Getting mold from water damage is a homeowner’s worst nightmare. No homeowner wants to hear the four-letter word “mold.” It may conjure up images of health problems and expensive removal methods. Mold is something that we all seem to think is impossible to get rid of. However, there are solutions provided by professionals that will help remove the mold completely that was caused by water damage.
The source of water and the wording of the homeowner policy often determines whether your policy covers mold damage and removal. Most standard homeowner policies only cover mold removal when the line items in the policy already cover the source of the mold. Typically mold removal and damage coverage go along with certain water damage situations. It is not often covered if it is something that has been there for a long time.
When Is Mold Covered Typically?
Mold should be covered in most cases if it is the result of sudden and accidental situations such as a dishwasher overflowing or a pipe burst. The claim is based on a pipe burst or a faulty dishwasher rather than the mold itself. The mold is simply a secondary issue that was caused by the first issue that is covered in most homeowners’ policies.
Another example is a house fire. Assume the firefighters arrived in time to save most of your house. On the other hand, Mold has grown in your home as a result of the water from the fire hoses. Your homeowner’s insurance may cover this.
Times When Homeowners Won’t Cover Mold Issues
Your insurer will not pay for a claim resulting from negligence. For example, suppose your showerhead has been leaking for months, causing water damage and, as a result, mold. Or if your window isn’t properly sealed and rain gets in, allowing mold to grow. Mold claims are more likely to be denied if they result from poor home maintenance. Things such as prolonged exposure to humidity, frequent water leaks, and seepage are examples of areas not covered by most policies.
Furthermore, mold damage caused by a flood would be uninsured because most homeowners’ insurance policies do not cover flooding. However, if you purchased a separate flood insurance policy, it would typically cover any flood-related mold damage.
Mold Removal Methods
Mold can grow as a result of circumstances beyond your control, but it can also be avoided in some cases.
- Check for and repair any water leaks or spills as soon as possible.
- Make certain that rainwater drains away from your home.
- Maintain the functionality and cleanliness of your gutters.
- Keep an eye out for condensation on your walls and windows; if you see too much moisture, you may need to reduce or turn off your humidifier.
- Install a dehumidifier in your basement or other damp areas of your home.
- All water-using appliances should be serviced regularly (refrigerator, washing machine, dishwasher or water heater, etc.)
- In wet areas such as bathrooms or basements, carpet should be avoided.
The source of the moisture that caused the mold is frequently used to determine whether or not it is covered by homeowners insurance. Water is always needed for mold growth. Examine the language in your policy, especially the section on water damage. Look out for mold limitations or exclusions.